My apologies, Campers! My attentions have been elsewhere lately. Might have something to do with the latest incarnation of Mark and friends…
So glad that Mark’s “Terrible Week” ended up so well… and he’s a hero to Rusty! Sampled, otherwise known as stealing… let’s hope Mark sees more green than the green of Reptiliannaire’s suit!
Ralph the Rat Snake. Next…
On to the domestic bliss of the work-a-day, own-a-business life… Cherry receives a missive from the local Homeowners’ Association. If ever there was an assault on private property rights, its initials are HOA…
The “Sunny Sun” Committee? As compared to the “Rainy Rain” or the “Cloudy Cloud?”
Or maybe just read the fine print, Cherry… One might imagine that a permit attached to a plan would have to get submitted to an approving body. But hey, what do I know?? You be you, OK?
OK, so it’s time to compare Old Cherry with New Cherry. Old Cherry would “understand…” “It’s just work, Honey” “Oh I know, it’s what you do, Mark, so you toddle off, and do whatever it is you do…” Today’s Cherry, not so much…
You got a permit for those geese? I’d expect a letter about those marauding, salmonella spreading poop factories before there’d ever be a letter about a palm tree!
Mark fell for Cherry’s dysfunction and anger issues! That’s funny! But then it appears that they are both prone to outburst and struggle!!
Yea, why let Cherry know what is taking you to LA? Why communicate? Leaves much more room unexpected outcomes and misunderstandings! The fruit of the comedic vine, so to speak…
Back tomorrow, Campers, I promise!
Very good post Dennis! We’ve been waiting! Good job making lemonade out of lemons. Evidently, the powers that be will continue to let Jules go ad nauseam with absolutely no direction to the strip. Let’s see what George has to say. I must say I’m impressed with Jules putting rulers on to Sunday strips. Good to know how long the animals are.
Well, I agree, Mark. Dennis usually has good insights to provide, which is what keeps me coming back to this site. So, I hope my comments below are not too tedious!
As for the strip, I suppose I’m still working on getting my head wrapped around it, as the cliché goes. But I have a hunch that Jules is, as well. Not sure she has decided how—or whether===to break with the past. She seems to be having fun (at our expense?) poking the old Mark Trail corpus. Some people may think the characters will mellow out over time. I don’t think so, as that is a lot of the schtick Rivera brings to Mark Trail. And let’s face it, folks: Jules is not writing for the somewhat overweight, gray-haired, old-timers who remember “Father Knows Best” before it went to reruns!
Then again, we all spent lots of time poking fun and shaking our fingers at Elrod and Allen for their sometimes lame or repetitious stories, clip-art figures, plot lines that disappear, the hapless Rusty, Mark’s inability to show the slightest interest in any female (no matter how desirable or available), and Mark’s perma-press appearance!
If this new reality is too much, how about this is like Bizarro-World and Bizarro-Superman in the DC Comics, a parallel world where everything was the exact opposite of Earth. We are now in an Alternate Reality….any takers? No?
Personally, I think Rivera’s biggest concern (besides the steady paycheck) is gaining new and younger viewers. That’s tough in a world where many people don’t even read newspapers any longer, to say nothing of visiting Comic Syndicate web sites.
But my biggest criticism: I think the syndicate should have replaced “Mark Trail” the strip with “The Young Mark Trail” (think “The Young Morse” on public TV). Here, Mark is an adolescent awakening to the lure of Nature and his growing desire to protect it: We’d see new supporting characters, new opponents, different locations, etc. It could have opened a lot of new avenues without stepping on the traditional canon of the original Mark Trail. Unfortunately, North America Syndicate, Inc. did not call me first. That’s all for today, folks!
I agree George. Jules is writing for a demographic that is not there! Quite honestly, the only people I can visualize reading Mark Trail are the over 50 crowd. Teen Sparkle just does not make it with this particular strip. The basis of this strip since 1946 has inherently been the outdoors (Camping, Fishing, and very solid outdoor artwork). Jules new take on Trail more appropriately could be in magazines Seventeen or Cosmo Girl. I have an open mind and those of you who follow Dennis’s blog know my feelings on the new cartoonist. But I’ll guarantee there are many, many older Trailheads like me who probably skip it over know to read Blondie.